Archive Page 2

16
Jan
11

‘Shameless’

All this uproar about the Suit Supply ‘Shameless’ campaign. Don’t we all know that sex sells? This campaign might be a bit shocking and too revealing for some but isn’t it great that there are still companies out there that dare to be different and dare to provoke people?

I think the campaign is great. It has started a major discussion. I think that was the whole idea behind this campaign and to sell suits of course. This basically means that everyone that is complaining is just playing into Suit Supplies hands.

It was obvious when this campaign came out that there was going to be a lot of negativity surrounding it. Especially in the UK there have been negative comments. Mums worrying their small children seeing the posters and woman being disgusted by the vulgar and demeaning way the blond lady is being shown.

Here are a few pictures of the campaign so you know what I’m talking about.

Come on people don’t be prude, it isn’t as if it’s the first time we have seen a boob or underwear in campaigns, right? We have all seen the Sloggi underwear campaigns. It’s not as if men really think that if they wear a Suit Supply suit or any suit for that matter that they can just look under your skirt or touch you in private places (well some might, you never know).

The photographs have been shot by a well know photographer and you can’t really say that they don’t look amazing. Very provocative and you have to use your imagination with some of them, it is a very challenging campaign. But did we expect any less from Suit Supply? Not really.

This company has brilliant campaigns that just hang on the edge of not being too much. Like their ‘Start Smoking’ campaign to sell more smoking jackets. So clever.

The way Suit Supply has reacted to the complaint has been very impressive as well.

This company just keeps surprising us with provocative campaigns and I think we should not complain about them but appreciate them. There are enough dull and annoying campaigns in the world. This campaign is like a breath of fresh air. There are still companies out there that are creative and don’t care causing some uproar in the world. And why not?

There is just one photograph that I think could have been a bit more classy. This is the one where the blonde lady is lying over the kitchen work top. I can imagine this picture causing a bit of an uproar but all the other ones are great.

Here is a link to the Guardian that posted a story about the campaign and some of the complaints: http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/nov/17/dutch-fashion-firm-racy-window-display.

Let me know what you think about the campaign. Too provocative or vulgar? I am very curious about your opinion surrounding this campaign.

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10
Jan
11

DMU Events work placement

During my MA Public Relations course one of the requirements is to do a work placement in January. I found a placement and am now helping the De Montfort University Events team for four weeks.

I have done an internship before at a company that did some event organising but not to the extent that the Events team of DMU does, wow. The details that have been thought about and how well the events staff know the companies they work with is very impressive.

My first week was all about getting to know the staff, how they work, what each of the staff work on, reading up on all the upcoming events, how to work with certain programmes and of course had to go through the very thorough and important health and safety check (this was no doubt the highlight of my first week). There is a lot of admin work involved during this internship but I didn’t really expect anything else as it is only for four weeks.

The way of working, how all the time plans and event plans are put together and how detailed they are has really amazed me. If every event company had these plans and worked thinking as detailed as the DMU Events team does, I don’t think any event could ever go wrong.

There are some very interesting lectures coming up this year organised by the DMU Events team. I will be helping on two of them this January. Liz Kendall, Shadow Health Minister on January 20 and Xudong Zhao, Professor of Low Carbon Society on January 27 are the distinguished lecture and professorial lecture I will be helping on. I will put some more information about these lectures on my blog soon and will let you know how my second week was!

17
Nov
10

Lie to me

Lying

There was an interesting article in the Citylife and County living magazine last week: “The truth about lying“. Because PR is linked to the word ‘spin’ and can be seen as ‘lying’, I thought it might be interesting to read the article.

A sentence in the article that really got my attention was: “A world without deception might be a very difficult place to live – mean, do you want to hear that yes, your behind does look big in that?” I’m not really sure what my answer to this question would be and I thought really hard about it. It depends on what your behind looks big in doesn’t it? If my behind looked big in something that I really love I wouldn’t want to hear it, but if my behind looked big in something that was reasonable then someone could actually say that to me.

But we are not talking about behinds looking big in things are we. We are talking about lying in the PR business. An interesting quote from the article that I thought went very well with explaining PR and what it’s all about is: ”Know what they know. Be aware of their interests and activities so you can cover your tracks.” It’s all about relevance to the target group and what they want to believe and then you feed that to them. Is this lying? Not really, you are telling people what they want to hear or maybe trying to persuade people what you want them to think.

Then we always end up at the question: “Is lying, I prefer the word spinning, to your target audience ethical?” The answer that I think answers all the questions about if some actions are ethical is, NO. It is not ethical to lie or spin the truth, but as long as nobody knows there is no harm is there?

For example: Constructing a list of favourite music for David Cameron to help him manipulate his public image. Is this ok to pretend you like something because it makes you look cool or cultured?

The subject surrounding David Cameron might be a touchy subject but again the answer is: NO. It is not ethical, but do we really mind if we don’t know that David Cameron didn’t actually picked the songs? No. But we would mind if all the national and local newspapers wrote that David Cameron actually didn’t pick the songs, someone else did. Well then all hell would have probably broken loose. Wouldn’t it?

In my opinion ‘lying’ is a very strong word, especially when using it in combination with PR. It can be seen as ‘being economical with the truth’. We all do it sometimes to make ourselves look better, sound better, impress people, to get things our own way.  I don’t think that we have to be too cynical about this, we all know that the truth is manipulated but if we thought too much about that we would never believe anything! The manipulation has to be subtle, not too in your face, or it wouldn’t be credible.

Tell me what you think about PR spin. PR and the ethical aspect of it and if you think this is acceptable in this field of work.

09
Nov
10

How would you explain PR to your parents?

How would you explain to people what PR actually is?

After the first lectures about PR Structure and Theory there is a bit of confusion about what PR actually is and how people perceive PR. What would the average pers

on on the street answer if you asked them the question? Do they actually know what PR stands for?

Julius CaesarPerhaps most people would be surprised to know that PR goes right back to the Romans and Julius Caesar or maybe even earlier than. Can we see him as an PR innovator? Maybe we can, didn’t he use and ancient form of reputation management, stunts and shows to get people talking and writing about him?

William the Conqueror and the Normans cleverly told the story of 1066 in the Bayeux tapestry., but whose story is being told in it? Do the tapestries tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth? Or could they be the start of the oh so famous PR term ‘spin’?Bayeux Tapestry

A famous comment about Public Relations is: ”Public Relations was not invented by Americans and then exported elsewhere.”

But is this true?
Aren’t Ivy Lee and Edward Bernays famous for ‘inventing’ PR and aren’t these two from America? (Even though they are from America, they can be used as a good example of the start of PR to be able to come to a vague answer to the question of what PR is.)They were really at the forefront of PR at the time (even though it wasn’t really known as PR then!).

''Torches of Freedom''Bernays worked for one of the big tobacco companies in the US. He had to come up with a campaign to get women smoking as this was considered a male habit in the 1920’s. Posters that were used to persuade women showed young models smoking a cigarette in public on the arm of a famous man and lighting up a ‘Torch of Freedom’. Can this be seen as scientific persuasion or propaganda?

A quote from Edward Bernays: ”Those who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses pull the wires which control the public mind.” This can be seen as persuasion and propaganda but is it fair to say that PR can still be seen this way? Probably, if you ask UK journalist about PR people today.

Manipulation, propaganda, spin, influencing opinions and behaviour and persuasion. These are a few words that come to mind and have been used in this post when thinking of PR. Are all these words linked to PR to be seen as negative? Or could PR be seen as an important element in a democratic society?

There are so many questions surrounding PR and what it actually is. So tell me how you would explain to your parents or friends what PR is?

02
Nov
10

Building my online portfolio

Hi everyone,

I have set up this WordPress blog because it is part of one of the assignments during my MA Public Relations course. We are building our online portfolio and getting the hang of blogging because social media has become very important now a days.

During my MA course I will be blogging about news that is related to the public relations industry and about my work experience in January.

Hope you enjoy reading my blog posts and feel free to comment on anything you read on this blog.

Till the next post!




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